Altria Group reported on Friday a fourth-quarter profit that more than doubled to $1.24 billion, or 63 cents a share, from $488 million, or 24 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Excluding non-recurring items, adjusted earnings per share increased 16% to 66 cents a share, matching the FactSet consensus analyst estimate. Revenue rose 2.9% to $6.26 billion, with smokeable product sales increasing 1.7% and smokeless product sales growing 4.3%. The company said it expects 2015 adjusted earnings in the range of $2.75 to $2.80, surrounding analyst forecasts of $2.77. The stock, which was still mostly inactive in premarket trade, has run up 15% over the past three months, compared with a 1.3% gain in the S&P 500.
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